Löwenstein Infantry

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Hierarchical Path: Seven Years War (Main Page) >> Armies >> Hesse-Kassel Army >> Löwenstein Infantry

Origin and History

The regiment was raised in 1683 as the "Prinz Philipp zu Hessen Regiment of Foot." This prince was a brother of the reigning Landgrave Carl. A company of the city of Kassel served as the kernel of this new regiment, which initially consisted of eight companies.

In 1687, the regiment had to give 6 officers, 12 non-commissioned officers, 4 drummers and 233 privates and ordinary soldiers to the regiment "Prinz Carl", who participated in the campaign in Morea (Greece).

In 1689, during the Nine Years' War (1688-97), despite its recent contribution to the creation of a new regiment, the regiment played a major role in the siege of Mainz and Bonn. In 1692, it took part in the siege of Ebernburg and in the defence of Rheinfels. In 1695 it was also involved in the siege of Namur. Overall, the regiment took part in the campaigns on the Rhine, Sambre, Meuse and the Netherlands until the Peace of Ryswick in 1697. At the end of the war, it was reduced to only five companies in a single battalion.

During the War of the Spanish Succession, the successive Chef of the regiment were:

  • from 1696: Colonel Otto Hermann von Löwenstein
  • from 1703: Colonel Franz von Stückrath (aka Stückradt)
  • from 1709: Colonel Christian (or Christoph) Ludwig Motz
  • from November 1713: Lieutenant-General Conrad von Rancke

In 1789, the regiment was integrated into Regiment Loßberg (1st Battalion).

Service during the War

Between 1702 and 1713, the regiment fought on the Rhine, in the Netherlands, in Bavaria and also in Italy.

From April to June 1702, one battalion of the regiment took part in the Siege and capture of Kaiserswerth. In July, it was encamped near Nijmegen. In October, it was at the storming of the citadel of Liège; and in December at the blockade of Rheinfels, which was occupied by imperial troops. After the withdrawal of the imperial troops, the regiment was quartered there. The same year, it was augmented to 10 companies organised in two battalions.

In April and May 1703, the regiment took part in the Siege of Bonn. It was also present at the siege of Andernach. In September, it took part in the siege of Limbourg. On 15 November, one battalion of the regiment fought in the Combat of Speyerbach.

By mid-February 1704, one battalion of the regiment was posted on the Rhine in the Allied Corps of the Prince of Hesse. On 2 July, this battalion was present at the Battle of the Schellenberg. On 13 August, it took part in the victorious Battle of Blenheim. From September, this battalion was involved in the Siege of Landau and, in November, in the siege of Trarbach.

In 1705, the regiment was involved in the capture of Huy, Sout-Leeuwen, St. Philip and the lines of Tirlemont. It took its winter-quarters on the lower Moselle, in the vicinity of Nahe and Glan. In December, it moved to new quarters in Schwarzenfelden.

On 19 August 1706, the regiment, which had been transferred to Italy, took part in the capture of Goito, located on the Mincio River. It then besieged Castiglione. On 8 September, it fought in the Battle of Castiglione.

In 1707, one battalion of the regiment was present at the siege of Milan. In July and August, it was at the unsuccessful Siege of Toulon.

For the campaign of 1708, the regiment was back to the Low Countries. From August to December, it took part in the siege and capture of Lille.

From July to September 1709, the regiment took in the Siege of Tournai. On 11 September, it took part in the Battle of Malplaquet. Then in September and October, it was at the Siege of Mons. The regiment took its winter quarters in Hesse.

In April and May 1710, the regiment took part in the Siege Douai. In July and August, one battalion of the regiment was present at the Siege of Béthune, which surrendered on 29 August. In September, the regiment took part in the Siege of Saint-Venant and then from September to November, in the Siege of Aire-sur-la-Lys.

In August and September 1711, the regiment took part in the Siege of Bouchain.

In June and July 1712, the regiment was at the Siege of Le Quesnoy and, from July to August, at the Siege of Landrecies.

Uniform

Privates

Uniform - Copyright Kronoskaf
Uniform Details
Headgear
Fusilier black felt tricorne probably laced yellow (the metal colour of the regiment)
Grenadier no information found
Neck stock black cravate
Coat blue with orange lining and with copper buttons from top to bottom on the right side, and one copper button on each side in the small of the back
Collar none
Shoulder Straps none
Lapels none
Pockets horizontal pockets low on the coat, each with 3 copper buttons
Cuffs orange, each with 3 copper buttons
Turnbacks none (it seems that the basques of the coat could be turned back if needed but this was a rare practice during this period)
Waistcoat blue with small copper buttons
Breeches leather
Stockings grey woollen stockings
Leather Equipment
Crossbelt wide natural leather bandolier
Waistbelt natural leather worn above the coat
Cartridge Pouch large cartridge pouch
Bayonet Scabbard black with a brass tip
Scabbard black with a brass tip
Footwear black shoes with buckles fastened with a strap


Armaments consisted of a flintlock musket and a bayonet; and a sword. As early as 1699, the firearms had consistently been converted to new flintlocks, so that the outdated muskets with matchlocks and the pike to repel the cavalry had to be removed. Each man also had a satchel made of calfskin, a powder horn a tin canteen was carried over the shoulder on a strap, and a pair of yellow leather gloves.

In the Hessian infantry, the hair was worn loose and down to the shoulders, unlike the French, who tied the hair in a braid.

Officers

Officers often had decorative feathers on their tricorne. They also wore a red and white sash around the waist. They were equipped with spontoons and a sword.

NCOs

Sergeants, fourier and captain of arms were equipped with partisans (also called Kurzgewehr).

Musicians

Musicians often had decorative feathers on their tricorne. They usually wore a uniform similar to that of the soldiers, heavily decorated with braids.

The shells of the drums were mostly made of wood. The drums had a very muffled sound.

Colours

Each battalion usually had two colours, one white and one coloured.

References

Army Hesse-Kassel: Grundlage zur Militär-Geschichte des Landgräflich Hessischen Corps. Cassel 1798, pp. 319-324

Böhm, Uwe Peter: Hessisches Militär: Die Truppen der Landgrafschaft Hessen-Kassel 1672-1806, Herausgegeben im Auftrag der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Heereskunde e.V., Beckum 1986

Goldberg, Claus-Peter and Jean Belaubre: Hessen-Kassel 1701-1714. Kaltenkirchen 1995, pp. 15-16

Witzel, Rudolf: Hessen Kassels Regimenter in der Allierten Armee 1762, bearb. u. hrsg. von Ingo Kroll, Norderstedt 2007, pp. 84-86

Zeitschrift des Vereins für hessische Geschichte und Landeskunde, Volume 8, Kassel 1860, p. 168-175, 215

N.B.: the section Service during the War is partly derived from our articles depicting the various campaigns, battles and sieges.

Acknowledgements

Jörg Meier for additional info on the commanders of the regiment

Björn Wiegand for a major overhaul of the article